Mayor Eric Adams slammed pro-Palestine supporters on Monday evening during a vigil for Israel, calling the weekend’s terrorist attacks unjustifiable.
In an emotional moment at Golda Meir Square alongside fellow elected officials, Adams lit an array of candles in the shape of the Star of David as onlookers solemnly sang, and others furiously wept.
Hizzoner called the emergency rally in support of Israel days after Hamas launched the attacks on Oct. 7. However, Mayor Adams also used the vigil to denounce a series of pro-Palestine protests in the Big Apple in the attacks’ immediate aftermath.
“Nothing can justify pulling innocent children from their homes, murdering them, dragging them through the streets, laying your feet across their bodies—nothing can justify what we witnessed,” Adams said. “No one should be celebrating this. No one.”
For the last several days, dueling protests have attempted to clash over the devastating images and videos emerging from the Middle East. Adams took those celebrating what is becoming known as Israel’s 9/11 to task.
“I’m watching protests where people are carrying swastikas. … The same swastika symbols were used when African-Americans were attempting to fight for their freedom and their right to exist. This cuts across all lines,” Adams charged. “I stand here today, my heart is broken. I stand here today in pain.”
Adams told the surrounding group of several hundred attendees that New York stands with Israel, adding that he believes its people have a right to defend themselves.
Joining the mayor were Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso, as well as other elected officials and rabbis. They joined in both condemning the attacks in Israel. Despite the raw emotion and running tears, speakers praised the surrounding crowd for standing with Israel.
“The unity that is here this evening, I cannot tell you how great is the power of this unity—the entire world should take note,” Rabbi Dovid Goldwasser said. “We will see and we will all pray together. We will pray for the speedy recovery of all those that are wounded. We’re going to pray for each and every hostage to be brought back now.”
According to latest data emerging, at least 900 people have perished in Israel and over 2,500 have been injured.